Arraignment held for minister accused of child molestation

An East Bay minister appeared in Contra Costa County court on Tuesday to face charges that he sexually molested a girl over a period of several years, according to the District Attorney's Office. 

32-year-old Fernando Maldonado faces 23 counts including charges of unlawful sexual intercourse and lewd acts on a child.

The charges come after Martinez police received a report on April 18 that Maldonado sexually assaulted a girl under the age of 14 starting in 2012, according to police.

Officers arrested him and served search warrants in Concord, Martinez and Pleasant Hill.

A resident of Concord, he has worked as a Baptist minister at churches in Martinez and Pleasant Hill, investigators said.

Investigators said they're looking into whether there are other potential victims.

The District Attorney's Office said Maldonado did not enter a plea on Tuesday and is set to return to court in two weeks. 

Maldonado is being held on $725,000 bail at the Martinez Detention Facility.